Traffic Control Operations Center & Advanced Traffic Signal System

Worcester, Massachusetts

Located on Main Street in Downtown Worcester, this project consisted of designing a traffic control operational center by integrating multiple closed loop systems into the existing and outdated traffic control center. The system consists of 11 signal locations with future add on for more intersections. The remote traffic control operational center has the ability to provide real time traffic information to the City’s engineering department as well as remote locations outside of Worcester. The command center was integrated with 50” flat screen monitors capturing live traffic conditions as well as traffic surveillance.

The project included the upgrade of local signal equipment with new controllers, traffic software, detection system, communication equipment (video encoders), Ethernet, fiber optic patch panels, distribution amplifiers, wireless communication, and fiber optic network. Video detection systems provide three consolidated functions: vehicle local and system detections, traffic surveillance, and live traffic monitoring. The improvements also upgraded the existing closed loop system with the latest traffic signal control equipped with Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) capability such as Adaptive Traffic Signal Control and Peer to Peer system operation. This provided an adaptive signal timing control operation based on real time, on-demand traffic conditions.

The system is also designed to have a fail-safe feature in the event of a communication, adaptive processor, or detector failure. If a failure is detected, the system issues an alarm to user specified recipients and automatically reverts or will be set by the system to time-of-day traffic plans stored on each of the local controllers, in real time, without operator intervention and without causing disruptions to traffic flow. It also interfaces with the operation of the pedestrian signal phasing, emergency vehicle pre-exemption, flashing yellow arrow, and transit signal priority systems coupling with the existing Automatic Vehicle Locator (AVL) in the transit vehicles for overall traffic operational management. The systems comply with the requirements established in the FHWA’s Model System Engineering Document for Adaptive Signal Control Technology (ASCT). The system’s engineering evaluation consists of evaluating the following ASCT traffic operating software:

  • SynchroGreen by TrafficWave
  • InSync by Rhythm Engineering
  • Siemens SCOOTS Adaptive System